Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Blue Monday

Blue Monday..

What is with retro music icons and Mondays? Poor Karen Carpenter couldn't cope with rainy days or Mondays. In fact so averse was she to both that she penned a song about them. So far, so cheerful. Bob Geldof and the Boomtown Rats were obviously on the same page as Karen, hence their UK chart-topping hit in 1979, I Don't Like Mondays. For The Bangles, Mondays were manic (a feeling undoubtedly shared by many a modern city worker). More recently, the media was awash with tales of Blue Monday (which inspired the eponymous New Order song).

Supposedly the most depressing day in the year, this day always falls on the third Wednesday of January. This year it fell on 17th January, and was the subject of many a journalists' feature.

But truth be told, for many of us, especially in these economically barren times, any Monday can feel like a Blue Monday. It's no wonder that sales of skincare and cosmetics sky rocket during a recession. Looking at the news, or one's bank balance, is hardly inspiring joy, so why not indulge your senses and mood with a little pick-me-up here and there. If it's a decision between the latest designer "it bag" (at a price to make bank managers and partners wince), or a cheeky little beauty indulgence at the fraction of the cost, I know which one I'd be more inclined to choose.

Fashion is great. It's fun, it's instant and it's ever-changing. But this is why today's "must have" rapidly becomes "yesterday's news". Why splurge thousands on arm candy with a shelf life shorter than a Vogue intern, when you can invest a little money on great skincare that will make you look and feel great, day after day.

To this end, I'm eschewing Prada bags in favour of Liz Earle's Energising range. The Energising Body Lotion's ingredients list alone, boasts a whopping blend of 19 active botanicals (take that Miuccia). Extracts of ivy, caffeine, horse chestnut and butchers broom are combined with mood enhancing citrus essential oils and natural skin conditioners such as avocado, to wondrous effect. For optimum results, I thoroughly recommend dry body brushing using the Natural Bristle Body Brush. Start at the soles of the feet, gently brushing upwards towards the heart. When working the chest area, brush down towards the heart (avoiding the face and sensitive areas). This is a superb routine to adopt if you suffer from poor circulation in colder weather. Similarly, dry body brushing is fantastic for dispersing cellulite as it boosts lymphatic drainage, aiding the body's natural disposal of toxins and toning the skin.

Follow by washing with the Energising Body Wash. If you can bare it, turn the thermostat to cold for the last minute of your shower, it will further boost circulation and immunity, as well as closing pores. For the perfect finale to your shower ritual, massage the Energising Body Lotion in firm strokes, starting at the soles of the feet, moving upwards towards the heart. Goodbye Blue Monday, hello Happy Mondays.

Natural Bristle Body Brush - £7.40
Energising Body Wash - £11.00
Energising Body Lotion - £16.50


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